Sentimental or Saving Too Much?! (aka - Adventures in Desk Cleaning)

by Melissa Brunner

As you might have heard, we're in line to get a new set here at 13 News, which will mean moving the newscasts to the newsroom for a couple weeks. Because of that, we are all under orders to clean our desks.

I think this is really a ploy to get me and another certain person (I won't name names, but the initials are J.B.) to finally ditch the clutter. I don't like to think of my desk as messy - it's more like organized chaos. That said, even I am surprised by some of the things I found as I got the dark corners that are typically out of sight. I have one drawer that has housed most of my paper files, including things I brought with me from our old building. At one time, all of these items were legit. Remember the red water pipe replacement project from the mid-90s in Topeka? I still had some of those maps. But I also had notes from the 1997 legislative session - folders on death penalty and concealed carry legislation, historical facts on the Statehouse, since a renovation project was just in the works. The drawer that housed my save tapes also had become quite full - special programs on Brown v. Board, addiction, World War II veterans and more; file video of state prisons (from two tape formats ago!); the 2006 gubernatorial debate between Kathleen Sebelius and Jim Barnett. Again, much of it legit, some needing to be relocated to our file room, rather than living in my desk.

Other items simply had a way of multiplying. Tapes for recording feeds, a dozen half-used post it note pads, filled reporter notebooks, about 10 coffee mugs, empty folders, used-up pens, press passes from events long-since passed.

Then there are the items that have some questioning whether I'm just too sentimental. I have four teddy bears remaining on my desk - a fifth I gave away. One of them was sent to me by a soldier while he was stationed in Kosovo, another is from my mom and adorned with beads from KU's 2003 Final Four trip to New Orleans, one is a DARE lion and the fourth is a daffodil bear from the American Cancer Society. How can I downsize those?! I have snowglobes from our trips - Italy, Hawaii, Washington, D.C. Those are memories! The toy live truck a former coworker got me? Priceless!

Yes, my desk was in need of a legitimate overhaul, so I do appreciate the kick in the pants that has me giving it an overhaul. However, I'm not ready to totally ditch the personality. The teddy bears and snow globes are still here - I'll just keep them a bit tidier from now on, with only one coffee mug!

How about you? Do you appreciate some sentimental items on your desk or are you strictly business?



Progress made on the desk cleaning! Note the full trash can on the lower right - that's the second time I filled it!



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